This afternoon, we told you about a summer associate from Harvard Law School who has already been fired from his firm. After the story went up, the HLS 2L called Above the Law to “set the record straight.” He has a different version of what went on during his brief stay at McDermott, Will & Emery.
According to the former summer associate, who asked that we maintain his anonymity (so please don’t name him in the comments), he was let go because his work visa hadn’t yet come through. As many of you know, non-citizens need to have a work visa in order to work — and get paid — in America.
But according to the HLS 2L, his work authorization papers were delayed because MWE didn’t tell him he’d be able to start working as a summer associate until late February. In case you’re wondering, you cannot apply for a work visa until you know when you will actually be working (in terms of specific dates). The HLS 2L did apply for the work visa in late February, but he’s still waiting for the papers to come through.
As the HLS 2L put it:
I was never officially a summer at McDermott, so I really wasn’t fired.
More details about the HLS 2L’s “heated conversation” with a MWE partner, after the jump.
* The Cuban embargo has to be close to its end. I can’t wait to gamble gambol through Havana. [Transracial]
* The Chairman of the Bar Council of India received a lot of criticism for disparaging lawyers who bill a lot of hours to “work like a clerk.” [Legally India]
* Is Obama ready to stand against Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell? Or is he just talking tough? [Law Dork 2.0]
* Lawyers don’t lie for money. We are just masters of suspending disbelief — for money. [The Fat Bigot]
* The Mark Sanford saga is progressing very nicely. [Huffington Post]
* Michael Jackson’s will does exist. [TMZ]
* A thought controlled wheelchair. I can’t wait to see the tort actions arising out of this bad boy: “I didn’t mean to ram into the bipedal individual who was taunting me, I just thought about mowing him down and it happened.” [The Stimulist]
OCI Process Overview
Employer registration closes July 1, 2009. The number of scheduled interview rooms is down overall from last year, with a drop of about 45 percent for employers seeking 3Ls.
That’s not so surprising, is it? Just your average, everyday email explaining that recruitment for 3Ls has FALLEN OFF OF A FREAKING CLIFF!
Arguably, more 3Ls than usual will be forced into 3L interviewing (unless you really believe, contrary to some observers, that offer rates will be around close to 100% for current summer associates).
More job seekers + Fewer employers = Recipe for disaster.
After the jump, UT tipsters weigh in.
We did NOT, contrary to popular belief, celebrate like munchkins [rejoicing in] the Wicked Witch’s death when the “Peanut Girl” transferred — but we are definitely doing so now (unless, of course, Dean Sargent is ill — in which case we wish him the best).
Sadly, Dean Sargent may be ill; he is stepping down for “personal and medical reasons.” We wish him a speedy recovery. We also hope his successor is similarly skilled in the use of the “reply all” function.
Read the announcement, from Villanova President Peter Donohue, after the jump.
We’re getting very close to having 100 U.S. Senators. The AP reports:
The Minnesota Supreme Court has ordered that Democrat Al Franken be certified as the winner of the state’s long-running Senate race.
The state’s top court rejected a legal challenge from Republican Norm Coleman, whose options for regaining the Senate seat are dwindling.
Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty promised to certify the winner based on the court’s unanimous decision.
Al Franken is now poised to assume his seat in the Senate. Will Norm Coleman appeal to SCOTUS? Even if he does, will Franken be seated as a Senator? Didn’t this election end eight months ago? Update (4:03): Norm Coleman accepts the loss and will not appeal the Minnesota Supreme Court ruling to SCOTUS. He congratulates Al Franken. Court paves way for Franken to join Senate [MSNBC.com] Minnesota court rules Democrat Al Franken won Senate seat [Reuters]
Since the recession hit the American economy with full force, Weil Gotshal has received some very high profile work. But it is not immune from the economic problems within the legal industry. The firm recently fired nearly 80 staffers, and in March the firm deferred some of its incoming first years until 2011.
Today brings more unfortunate news for Weil Gotshal employees. According to an internal communication obtained by Above the Law, the firm is closing its office in Austin. One partner, sixteen associates, and eleven staffers will be affected by the move.
The partner, Kevin Kudlac, will be relocating to Weil’s Houston office. All the associates and staff have been offered an opportunity to transfer to one of Weil’s other offices. If they don’t transfer, they’ll receive severance benefits.
Good luck, displaced Texans. I hear Houston is lovely this time of year.
Check out a screen shot of the Weil email after the jump.
Summer associates have landed at offices across the nation. They’re working harder this year, even if some of the work is fake, and they’re eating out less often. But the Biglaw recruits are still having fun — sometimes too much fun.
We’ve been asking you about the big events for this year’s summers — concerts, movie previews, booze cruises, etc. Look out for contest finalists soon!
Cadwalader may have already established itself as a front runner in the competition. Last week, the firm took its summers to see a Mets game. Afterwards, some of the attorneys and summers went from Shea to shady. [FN1] From a knowledgeable source:
After the game, some of the male associates took some of the male summers out for some “after-event” bonding. The problem with this bonding is that it was a trip to the strip club. I’m not sure if the firm knew about the afterparty event or if it was sanctioned by or expensed to the firm, but this certainly seems to send a message of exclusion to women; or at least — even if any female summers attended (which none did) — that the firm not only tolerated but supported the objectification / degradation of women that occurs at these venues.
The firm was aware of the outing, but it doesn’t support these Cadwalader cads. The official response, after the jump.
Man down! We’re not even into July, and it seems that one summer associate has already gotten himself fired. (We’re fairly sure it was a him, but please correct us if we’re wrong.)
Generally SAs are terrified this summer, and therefore on their best behavior. But one fellow apparently didn’t get the memo. Interestingly enough, according to multiple sources, the fired summer is a student at the hallowed Harvard Law School.
Details are a little sketchy, so please treat this as an early draft. The story will surely evolve, as summer associate stories often do. E.g., Skadden Cristal Boy (original version here, alternate version here); Kirkland & Ellis’s Bruised Booze Cruiser (original version here, alternate version here); the Sapphic Smoochers (compare the different versions of the story by scrolling down through the Lindquist & Vennum archives).
Here’s the abridged version:
There are rumors floating around among HLS students that a summer got himself fired. As far as details, I had heard that he talked back to a partner.
A more detailed account, suggesting that alcohol was involved, after the jump.
This list, which we launched in 2003, aims to measure and quantify the qualities that define an elite law firm, making an effort to look beyond profits. We examine four factors: revenue per lawyer, commitment to pro bono, diversity among lawyers, and associate training and satisfaction. Our formula gives more weight to the first two factors; we double a firm’s scores for revenue per lawyer and pro bono, and then add scores for diversity and associate satisfaction.
This year’s A-List? The elite of the elite? The top three firms are:
1. Munger, Tolles & Olson 2. Hughes Hubbard & Reed 3. Latham & Watkins
I’ll pause to give laid off Latham associates an opportunity to finish screaming. Please return after the jump.
Yesterday morning, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the case American Needle v. National Football League (pdf, p.3) for purposes of determining whether the NFL clubs’ collective licensing of individual club trademarks is exempt from antitrust scrutiny under the single entity defense. The Supreme Court’s decision to hear this case was likely influenced by the fact that it marks one of just a few times that both a plaintiff and defendant have requested the Court’s review.
Earlier this month, the United States Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission had filed an amicus brief recommending that the Supreme Court deny certiorari. The United States had argued the Seventh Circuit’s holding in American Needle did not conflict with existing case law–a view with which most sports-antitrust scholars disagree.
For those who have not been following the American Needle case, the original plaintiff, American Needle Inc., had for more than twenty years maintained a non-exclusive license to design and manufacture headgear bearing the NFL clubs’ names and logos. Then, nine years ago, the NFL clubs decided to offer an exclusive license to American Needle’s main rival, Reebok.
Upon being foreclosed from the ability to sell NFL headgear, American Needle sued the NFL clubs in the Northern District of Illinois, contending that the new NFL licensing arrangement violated Section 1 of the Sherman Act by illegally restraining trade in the market for purchasing rights to NFL logos. The NFL clubs, in turn, responded by not only alleging that their licensing arrangement was pro-competitive under antitrust law’s Rule of Reason, but also by contending that the NFL clubs combined to form a single-entity that was entirely exempt from antitrust scrutiny. Both the district court and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals granted summary judgment to the NFL clubs based on the single-entity theory.
But can all 32 NFL teams act as one? Analysis after the jump.
Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: [email protected].
Since late last year, things have been booming in Hong Kong / China in cap markets, especially Hong Kong IPOs. M&A deal flow has recently been getting a bit stronger as well. Although one can’t predict such things with any certainty, all signs are pointing to a banner entire 2014 for the top end US corporate and cap markets practices in Hong Kong / China. This is not really new news, as its been the feeling most in the market have had for a few months now and things continue to look good.
The head of our Asia practice, Evan Jowers, has been in Hong Kong for about 10 days a month (with trips every other month to both Shanghai and Bejing) for the past 7 months, and spending most of his time there meeting with senior US hiring partners at just about all the major US and UK firms there, as well as prospective candidates at all associate levels and partner levels, and when in the US, Evan works Asia hours and is regularly on the phone with such persons, as our the other members of our Asia team. Our Yuliya Vinokurova is in Hong Kong every other month and Robert is there about 5 times a year as well. While we have a solid Asia team of recruiters, Evan Jowers will spend at least some time with all of our candidates for Asia position. We have had long standing relationships, and good friendships in some cases, with hiring partners and other senior US partners in Asia for 8 years now.
The evolution of relationships between the genders continues. Currently, in law firms, there is an interesting conundrum; balancing the desire for a gender-blind workplace where “the best lawyer gets the work and advances” and the reality of navigating the complicated maze created by the fact that, in general, men and women do possess differences in their work styles. These variations impact who they work with, how they work, how they build professional connections and how organizations ultimately leverage, reward and recognize the talents of all.
Henry Ford sat on his workbench and sighed. A year earlier, he had personally built 13,000 Model Ts with his own hands. Fashioning lugnuts and tie rods by hand, Ford was loath to ask for help. Sure, there were things about the car that he didn’t quite understand. This explains the lack of reliable navigation systems in the Model T. But Ford persevered because he knew that unless he did everything, he could not reliably call these cars his own.
“Unless my own personal toil is responsible for it, it may as well be called a Hyundai,” Ford remarked at the time.
The preceding may sound unfamiliar because it is categorically untrue. And also monumentally stupid. Henry Ford didn’t build all those cars by hand. He had help and plenty of it. Almost exactly one hundred years ago, Henry Ford opened up the most technologically advanced assembly line the world had ever seen. Built on the premise that work can be chopped up into digestible pieces and completed by many men better than one, the line ushered in an age of unparalleled productivity.
Today, an attorney refers business because he can’t do everything the client asks of him.
There are three reasons why this is way dumber than a made-up Henry Ford story…